|Thomas Henry Rue was baptised in Pitney on 29th September 1873 - he was about 6 months old at the time.|
He was an illegitimate son born to Ellen Rue. I have no information at all on who his father may have been. His mother, Ellen was an 18 year old unmarried servant living in the home of Constant Salmon a widowed dairywoman in Pitney in the 1871 census.
By the 1881 census Thomas was aged 8 and was living at the Turnpike, Pitney with his grandparents, William and Susan Rue and their youngest son, William aged 18. I do not know what happended to Thomas's mother, Ellen, I assume she married but after the birth of Thomas I have no further information on her. It appears that Thomas was raised by his Grandmother, Susan.
In the 1891 census, still at Turnpike, Pitney, we see Susan now widowed and aged 67 with her grandson, Tom now 17 an unmarried general labourer.
On 17th August 1891 Thomas joined the Army as a soldier in the Somerset Light Infantry. He was 18 years and 6 months old, a farm labourer. He was 5ft 81/2 inches tall and weighed 123llbs bearing no distinctive marks, his eye colour is given but I can't read it! His complexion was fair and his hair dark brown. His next of kin was Susan Rue - his Grandmother.
He was posted to Gibraltar for 2 years and 39 days from November 1891 to December 1893 and went from there directly to the East Indies (Asia) for a further 5 years and 58 days, finally returning home on 15th February 1899.
On 4th November 1899 he was then posted to South Africa where the Boer War was being fought. He was a part of this and won a medal for his efforts.
He returned home from the war on 10th June 1900.
On 9th August 1900 Thomas married Ellen Elizabeth Glover in the Register Office in Langport. He was 27 an Army reserveman and she was 21 a Laundress. His father is given as "Thomas Rue - deceased" and whilst I know this to not be true I don't know whether he made this up or whther it was what he had been told.
What I do know is that in the 1901 census Thomas and his wife are shown twice - once in Pitney and again in Long Sutton -
Somerton Hill Road, Long Sutton
Thomas Rue aged 27 a general labourer from Pitney and Ellen Rue his wife aged 21 from Low Ham.
Thomas Rue aged 27 an ordinary farm labourer from Pitney and Ellen Rue his wife aged 21 from Low Ham.
It seems odd to me that he would not mention the fact he was a soldier. There is no mention of his war efforts or his army career in the cenus, indeed to describe him as "an ordinary farm labourer" does seem very odd indeed knowing that he had only just returned from South Africa.
On the 8th January 1902, Thomas returned to South Africa where the Boer War was continuing. He remained there until 7th September 1902 when he finally returned home for good.
He was discharged from the Army on 18th August 1903 having completed his engagement period.
In the 1911 census we see Thomas Rue aged 33 a farm labourer and his wife Ellen Rue aged 32 a Glover. The lived in Pibsbury near Langport (between Huish Episcopi & Long Sutton).
Thomas died, at his home at 7 Fairford Street, Barry on 7th September 1918. He was 44 and a railway labourer. Ellen was present at the death and the cause on his death certificate is (1) Hemiplegia and (2) Gumma Coma. A bit of research seems to suggest that this was likely what we would today call a stroke.
They had been married for 11 years and had no children.
The couple seem to have moved to South Wales between 1911 and 1918.
Ellen then remarried, to a William Webster in Cardiff in 1919.